A former Bucks vicar who punched and bit her fiancee in a lovers' spat has been cleared of wrongdoing.

Michelle Bailey, 54, used to be a vicar in Stewkley, in the Aylesbury Vale, but was living with her then-partner Diane Shore, 56, in Stoke-on Trent when the incident took place in May 2020.

Magistrates found that Miss Bailey was acting in self defence when she injured Miss Shore, and acquitted her of the assault and criminal damage charges against her following a trial at the North Staffordshire Justice Centre.

The prosecution had alleged that Miss Bailley had been drinking large amounts of wine before attacking her partner during lockdown, but when she took to the stand to give evidence herself, she said that she was not the aggressor.

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Miss Bailey said: “She stood up in front of me, there was an argument.

“It was about a lot of things. We’d argued all the way through lockdown.

“Diane grabbed me by the neck and pulled my hair and pushed me against the wall.

“She was pulling me by my hair in the bedroom. I bit her on her arm as I didn’t know what else to do.

“She wasn’t letting me go and I couldn’t breathe.”

Mum-of-three Miss Bailey previously hit the headlines in her former parish in Stewkley after leaving her husband for a female bull-breeder.

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After considering the evidence, were more convinced by Miss Bailey’s account.

Acquitting her of the charges, chair of the bench Marcus Waite said: “Overall, Miss Bailey’s evidence remained closer to events than Miss Shore’s.

“I need to bear in mind Miss Bailey is of good character. The photos of the injuries support Miss Bailey’s account.

“Miss Bailey acted out of self-defence, she is to be acquitted of the assault charge. She is also entitled to be acquitted of criminal damage."

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